What’s new in Apple’s iOS 16?

It’s that time of the year for Apple users – people with devices running iOS are updating to a new operating system. Apple launched iOS 16 on Sept. 12, four days before the iPhone 14 hits stores.

What’s iOS?

iOS is a mobile operating system for Apple-manufactured devices. iOS runs on the iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch and Apple TV.

In case you’re not familiar, an operating system (OS) is an interface between a computer user and computer hardware. The software performs all the basic tasks like file management, memory management, process management, handling input and output, controlling peripheral devices (like disk drives and printers for computers) as well as most processes that run on your devices.

What phones will support iOS 16?

If you own an iPhone 8 or later, then your phone will support iOS 16. Second generation or later models of the iPhone SE will also support the new software update.

A handful of features are only supported if your iPhone is running the A12 chip. How do you find this out? Basically, if you own an iPhone 8 or earlier, you won’t have the chip. Features such as pulling live text from video or lifting subjects from an image aren’t available on older iPhones.

How do I update my iPhone?

The easiest way is to check is to head to Settings>General>then click Software Update. Your iPhone will tell you whether iOS 16 is available for download.

How is the iOS 16 update different from the updates downloaded all the time on my iPhone? 

While Apple regularly issues minor updates for iPhones, they also release a new version of iOS once a year – iOS 16 is a new version of iOS. According to Apple, there are a number of changes for iOS 16, but two major changes include lock screen customization and recalling sent messages.

Lock screen customization

Up until the release of the new update, iPhone users were only able to personalize their lock screens by using different wallpapers. Starting from iOS 16, you will have full autonomy over your lock screen design. Not only you can now hide the watch behind the elements of your screensaver picture, but you can also add multiple lock screens, each with a different picture. Apple has enabled its users to personalize the Lock Screen through a new editor, customizing it with different colors and even shades, adding widgets, and even allowing the photo shuffle option. 

These widgets will allow users to access various information, like calendar events, alarms and time zones, among other things, without actually unlocking the phone. Live Activities is a new lock screen feature, which Apple officials say will allow viewers to stay on top of things that are happening in real-time, like sports games, rideshare, or food delivery orders, right from the lock screen. 

You can also look forward to a number of new wallpaper options, including astronomy-related wallpapers, weather-related wallpapers, among other selections.

Recalling messages

With iOS 16, users can now edit or recall messages that were recently sent, and recover recently deleted messages. In addition, users can mark conversations as unread so that they can come back to them later.

Focus mode upgrades

iPhone owners will have an easier time creating a Focus and transitioning between multiple Focus modes, such as shifting between work and personal uses or when you’re about to go to bed, for example.

Passkeys for Safari. 

What if your iPhone essentially becomes your password? Passkeys offers a new way to sign in to services or websites by using your iPhone as a way to log in with Touch ID or Face ID.

Are there other new features for iOS 16?

Yes! According to Apple officials, the new iOS contains other updates, including, but not limited to:

  • Share-play will now expand into text messages
  • New dictation features for text keyboard
  • Scheduling out e-mails
  • Canceling an e-mail’s delivery (within a set amount of time)
  • Enhancement to live text: text appearing in video can now be detected by the phone (just like texts in images). Users can interact with the text, such as translation or currency conversion, among other options.
  • Text message sticker creation feature for objects in images
  • Addition of Apple Pay Later (U.S. users only) into Apple Wallet.
  • In-app ID Verification for certain states (Maryland and Arizona)
  • Redesign of Apple Maps 
  • Multi-stop routing for Apple Maps
  • Family Sharing
  • Easier Parental Controls
  • Family Checklist

Author avatar
Alondra Cruz
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